Wednesday, March 11, 2009
A Walk Down Memory Lane with Pat & Quilling
One night recently, I took a walk down Memory Lane. I was actually looking for an article in one of the older issues of Quill America. (Quill America is the newsletter of the North American Quilling Guild). I am one of those people who keep everything in binders. I have a binder of things I would like to do someday, I have a binder with nothing but exercise articles in it, one for all of the old Lake City gazette newsletters, one for each of the quilling calendars I worked on etc. As I went through the binders I found two that were filled with pictures of quilling. I had forgotten all about them; they were pictures that quillers had sent to me years ago. Long before the North American Quilling Guild became official (that was in 2000), I used to write Quill America, which at that time was more of a letter than a newsletter. As more of us began to find each other, people started sending me pictures of their work . . . now you have to remember this was before computers became as common as toasters and before we knew about the internet. I put these pictures in binders (naturally!). It was kind of neat, people would just send me pictures with a little note telling me who they were, maybe how long they had been quilling. (I actually have a binder with the notes and letters in it, arranged alphabetically!) But I was the only one who got to see the pictures. So in my newsy letter I offered to send the binders out to anyone who wanted to look at them. I would pay the postage to send it to them and they would pay the postage to send the binders on to the next person who wanted to see them. Those binders traveled around the country for several years until they got so heavy that postage became an issue. As I looked through the pictures I couldn’t help but wonder at all of the people quilling has brought me in contact with (I know, I ended the sentence with a preposition!) In those days it took more effort to reach out to each other, it wasn’t as easy as attaching a file and hitting “send”. It meant taking a photo, getting it developed, writing a note or letter and mailing the whole thing. Now, I can go onto the internet and see hundreds of pictures of other quillers’ work. Reaching out to them is as easy as tapping a few keys on the computer. Maybe because it is so easy to email today, that when I do get one of those special letters it means even more. When Sister Consolata took the time to “type” me a letter (on a typewriter), I was very moved and even did a blog about her. Sister Consolata and Quilling She told me about a little boy she was teaching to quill so I sent her some cards and a quilling calendar for the little boy. He sent me the sweetest thank you card. Just this past week, I received another letter from an 85 year old quiller, who had given up quilling for a number of years and was just getting back into it. She said she had enjoyed visiting the Whimsiquills web site and she was amazed at all of the neat things we have now that were not available when she was quilling 30 years ago. She wrote, ”I have to say that my hands aren’t quite as dexterous as they used to be and it takes a little longer for the instructions to soak in, but I intend to once again master this wonderful, beautiful craft as much as I can.” She closed her letter with “Thank you so much for helping me find quilling again”. It is an interesting journey that we are taking, and it never ceases to amaze me how important a role the technology of computers and the internet are playing in the resurgence of interest in the art of quilling. But it is the people that I have met and spoken with over the last 30+ years that have made this journey so special!